Monday, November 19, 2007

Is Gordon Brown's government failing apart already?

There will come a time when Labour will fail to win an election, in my view that will be the next one, though I may be wrong. When they do, people will try and look back and see when the tide turned.

I suspect that the main focus is going to be on both the Conservative party conference of this year and the election that never was.

Up until the autumn it has be be grudgingly admitted that Gordon Brown had been doing a good job of being prime ministerial. He appeared to be dealing with the issues that came up as and when they did without looking like a messianic nutter (not that I have any one in particular in mind, oh no!).

Then the polls looked so good, that Gordon could call an election he had insisted on taking office that he did not need to, that he would win hands down.. in the run up to the party conference season.

It was always obvious that the wheels were going to come off that plan, because it was also always obvious that the Conservatives were going to get a conference bounce. However the speculation continued to be driven by those close to Brown (For that, read Ed "blinky" Balls and wee Dougie Alexander) to a point that when Brown said he was not going to call one because he wanted to shell out his vision the press smelt a rat (well, two, Blinky and wee Dougie) and have been at the government ever since.

We are now in a position where the Conservatives, in the latest poll by the Sunday Times, by Yougov lead Labour by 6 points, being on 41% (NC), Labour on 35% (-4) and the Liberal Democrats on 13% (+2). Well, to be fair that is no great shakes, but what is staggering is the change in fortunes of Gordon Brown's personal ratings. From a net approval rating of 30 (59% of people thinking he is doing a good job to 29% not) collapsing to -10! (33% good, 43% bad).

It has to be said the turnaround is staggering, though not irreversible. Well, I say that, I think there are dark forces in Labour looking to make it so. Leaks and briefings are again rife. We have this about David Milliband apparently being blamed for a campaign to destabilise the PM.

We have had stories about Gordon Brown and his tight cabal running all of government, in Brown's bunker first raised here in the FT, with this in the Times today about people leaping to the defence of Gordon Brown whilst there is this in today's Daily Mail about how government is constipated and dysfunctional according to senior civil servants.

The question is then this:

Will this government recover?

The answer is not while Ed "blinky" Balls, Ed Milliband and wee Dougie Alexander are in effect senior commanders. The problem this government has is that is the sum total of people Gordon Brown appears to trust.

1 comment:

Louise said...

The government will recover because the Tories have no policies that are worth the paper they are written on. You need a coherent, interlocking and well-funded/costed programme and a real reason for voting for the opposition as opposed to a set of poorly thought out, patronising (if there is anything the Tories need it is middle-class switch voters that began to come over in 2005, not the "poor" or "socially excluded", because very few people consider themselves such nowadays) and lightweight ideas which wouldn't stand up to an election where both parties are under heavy scrutiny given the possibility of a change in government. Like in 1992 I fear it will stay with the incumbent government simply because Cameron is like Kinnock - all bluster, no real gravitas or substance. And a lot of my non-political but Tory-voting friends agree.

I see I am the first to comment on this. Are you just ranting into the ether or are you interested in policymaking yourself? I see Michael Howard has been looking for people with experience of public policy problems and he is inviting comments to his campaign email in order to do some groundwork that the Tories need to do to inform their policymaking process better. Mind if I share it with you?! ;) Louise Stanley.